Educate + Explore

After doing what we do for a couple decades now, we've amassed quite a bit of knowledge when it comes to design, marketing, and doing better business. The purpose of the JVM blog is to share this knowledge with small business owners and entrepreneurs. If you have a request for a particular topic or would like to be a guest author, please get in contact.

Latest Posts

Best Practices for Responding to Your Online Reviews

Your small business has reviews! Now what?

92% of consumers read online reviews (souce: BrightLocal).

When you run your own small business, it’s very easy to take online reviews you see to heart. Good ones can truly make your day, but bad ones can seemingly ruin your whole week!

It’s very important to have a little perspective when you first read them, especially if it’s a negative review. Put yourself in [...]

Website Maintenance: Do It or Ignore It?

Launching a new website is an accomplishment, but it's not the end of the story. All websites need ongoing maintenance and regular content updates to remain an effective business tool. The problem is, will your new website actually get the maintenance and updates it needs?

Small Business Advice: The Only One Who Should Run Your Business Is You

There's no shortage of good advice for small business owners. There's no shortage of bad advice either. The internet has provided an explosion of coaches, gurus, consultants, and "experts".

How Does Consistency Make Your Branding More Effective?

Successful brands know how to create a clear, consistent brand message. When you see your favorite soft drink brand, for example, you know it immediately by the marketing materials used to promote it. Everything from logo, colors, and imagery used, to content, ad copy, and online marketing has a certain look and feel that you recognize instantly and effortlessly. You can create the same type of brand experience for your small business customers simply by [...]

When it’s not a good fit.

We’re not talking about shoes here, we’re talking about designers, clients, and design projects and how to determine when it just might not be a good fit. Below are some tips and some indications of when working with someone might not work out – before you start. Read through both the Client and Designer sections to understand each perspective.

For Clients …

You want the best designer you can find for your project and that’s [...]

Don’t Badmouth Your Own Business

"It's hard to get by." "The economy is so bad." "We really need to bring in more sales." "If things don't pick up......." It's easy to understand a business owner saying any of that. Cash flow problems and local economic conditions can seem like insurmountable obstacles sometimes. There's a problem, though. Within the past few years, I've heard all of those statements from business owners and staff, within fifteen minutes of walking through their door for the first time. I realize I'm expected to cluck in sympathy and join the pity party, but what I really want to say is, "What the hell are you thinking?"

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